East Coast Swing (Triple-time or 3x)
Similar to Jive (International Style)

Used by Permission and adapted from the Dance Vision International Dance Association - American Style Rhythm Bronze Manual (MarB04). www.dancevision.com


This dance traces its roots back to the Lindy Hop, created at the Savoy Ballroom, in the late 1920's. By the mid 1930's, it was also known as the Jitterbug or Swing and popularized by musicians such as Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway and Benny Goodman. The dance was very dynamic and athletic in speed and appearance. In the 1940's, the dance was toned down in ballroom studios and became known as Eastern Swing. In the 70's, the name was changed to East Coast Swing.

Dance Characteristics:

It is a fun, upbeat dance, distinquished by its bounce, rock step, and hip swing motion. It is non-progressive and circular in movement.

Musical Information:

Time Signature: 4/4
Tempo: 136 - 144 bpm
Count: 12, 3a4, 5a6; 12, 3a4, 5a6
Beat Value: 1-1, 2/3 - 1/3, 1  (or) 1-1, 1/2 - 1/2, 1
Teaching Counts: Rock Step, Tri-ple Step, Tri-ple Step

(Single Time Swing 160 - 184)
Count: 12, 3-4, 5-6; 12, 3-4, 5-6
Beat Value: 1-1, 2-2, 1-1,2-2 
Teaching Counts: Rock Step, Side, Side


Footwork is Ball Flat throughout, or as tempo increases Ball , Ball, Ball Flat. In the rock steps, keep weight forward and on the ball (heel may lightly touch down).  Keep toes turned out and feet in contact the floor, with slight pressure downward.

Technical Tips:

Stand with forward poise to create connection. Keep head and shoulders up. Be careful not to tilt from side to side. Take small steps. Lead and follow from the center using compression and tension in the hands. Use free arm in a natural way to complement the music and body movement. Avoid pulling away from each other and straightening arms during rock steps. Create bounce by flexing and straightening knees but keep knees relaxed. May add some Cuban Motion when straightening during the triple steps.*

* Depending on the music, the triples are danced in Swing Count (3 a4, 5 a6) or Rock Count (3&4, 5&6).

Some of My Favorite East Coast Swing Songs:

Bronze Syllabus Figures:

1. Basic

2. Basic Turning Right

3. Basic Turning Left

4. Throw-out

5. Inside Underarm Turn (or Free Spin)

6. Outside Turn 
      (+ 3 men’s turn variations, or alternating with inside turns)

7. Tuck-in Turns

     a. Right to Left (to Outside Turn)

     b. Double Handhold (to Outside Turn or Free Spin)

     c. Handshake hold (to Free Spin)

8. Alternating Turns (she inside, he outside)

9. Shoulder Check  (change of timing to 1 2, 3&4; 1 2, 3&4)

10. Cradle (also called Cuddle)

11. Cradle to Hammerlock

12. Sugar Push Throw-out

13. Double-face Loop

14. Opposition Break and Rollout

15. Whirlpool


Variations for Social Dancing:

Variations from West Coast Swing can be added.